Classical guitarist Rodrigo Rodriguez touches hearts when he plays for the Lord.
Contributed By Dawn Seow
A man walked across the stage at the recent Festival Of Praise and began to play a familiar tune on his guitar. A combination of skill and anointing brought an atmosphere of peace and serenity that lingered long after his short performance.
His name may not be familiar to many in Asia, but Rodrigo Rodriguez has traveled extensively around the world, supporting evangelistic crusades with his music since 1999. Some of these meetings see up to 45,000 people in attendance, and he has witnessed multitudes make life-changing decisions to follow Jesus as he worked together with the preacher and team on the mission field.
Rodriguez told City News that when he plays the guitar, the Holy Spirit uses the music to touch the hearts of people.
This is a revelation he had when he received salvation 19 years ago. He also said, “Since I became a Christian, I play with a purpose and meaning. The fountain of inspiration comes from the Lord now. Before I was playing for the people, now I worship with the people.”
Born into a family of musicians in Quito, Ecuador, South America, Rodriguez discovered his passion for music at a very young age. While little boys played with cars, he would be playing with his toy guitar. He started playing guitar at the age of 9 and recorded his first LP at the age of 12. When he was 16, he started to travel the world to increase his knowledge in the instrument, performing in Venezuela, Spain, France, England and Syria.
But growing up in a poor family, his desire was initially to use his music to gain fame and prosperity, thinking that it would give him the happiness he didn’t have as a child.
“My agent invited me to church, and I decided to go because something was missing from my life. I was still looking to be a famous guy. I did play around the world for different orchestras, but my heart was always looking for something more because God was not there. God made music for His own purpose and enjoyment, so even if musicians become very successful, they can become very lonely because God gave us this gift to worship Him,” Rodriguez shared.
“When I became a believer, I had a desire to serve God with my gift. This is one of the most amazing things God changed in my life. I now have the desire not to impress people but to impress the Lord. Every single note of my guitar is to tell God that ‘Lord, You are my friend, I am Your child.’ In the past when I was an entertainer, it was very difficult because there was always a struggle for fame. Now, if people like my music, that’s good. If not, then I’m just playing for my King; whether I play in a big church or a small church, it doesn’t matter.”
Now serving the Lord full-time, Rodriguez describes himself as a very joyful person. He is also a loving father of two sons aged 28 and 21, and a daughter aged 17. His second son, Sebastian, travels with him on some of these trips and accompanied him to Singapore.